Ardmore coach Douglas Wendel wants his team to “turn it loose” at the annual Super Scrimmage tonight at Noble Stadium.
The second-year coach of the Tigers kept repeating the phrase at practice on Thursday. After reviewing the Tigers’ initial scrimmage offering against Noble, Wendel wants his team to come out against Lone Grove and Sulphur tonight with a somewhat different mindset.
“I want us to play loose, I want us to play fast,” Wendel said. “I want us to do less thinking. I think the execution’s going to be better because it was better this week in practice, no doubt about that.”
The controlled scrimmage will begin at 5:30 p.m. with Ardmore’s freshmen against Lone Grove’s freshmen. Afterward, Ardmore’s varsity will take on Lone Grove’s, followed by Wilson vs. Lone Grove for 35 minutes.
The scrimmage will conclude with Ardmore against Sulphur. Each segment of the scrimmage will consist of anywhere from six to 15 scripted plays.
Sulphur scrimmaged against 2011 Class 3A semifinalist Lindsay and Bridge Creek last week.
“It’ll be a pretty good step up, and I think that’s good for us,” Sulphur coach Jim Dixon said. “We’ll see if our kids step up and give all they have.”
Sulphur is holding out a few players tonight to get them healthy for its first ball game against Wynnewood, a contender for the No. 1 spot in Class A.
“We’ve spent the whole week getting prepared for our first ball game,” Dixon said. “The first thing through our second scrimmage is to get everybody through healthy.”
Week 1 of the regular season was definitely on Ardmore’s mind this week. The word “Ada” was mentioned more than once on Thursday, as the Tigers and Cougars are just seven days away from their annual “Battle of the Cats,” on Aug. 31.
Ardmore defensive coordinator Josh Newby has consistently reminded his defense that Ada has nine starters returning on offense.
“Every day, we’ve gotten a littler better and we’ve matured,” Newby said. “I was on them early about the attention to detail and the small things, but they’ve listened and they’ve continually improved, so I’m excited.”
Erik K. Horne